Lecture 2-The Humanities-Art, Music, Literature, Philosophy, History, and Appreciation-Prehistory th

This preview shows page 1 - 2 out of 4 pages.

The Humanities: Art, Music, Literature, Philosophy, History, and AppreciationIn this unit we will be focusing on methods of how to approach an artwork. You may beasking yourself what it means to have a method for approaching an artwork, all one needs to dois simply look at the art, know when, where, how, and by who. And, from a descriptive mode,this is true. But History, even the history of Art, is an investigation that looks to answer questionsabout human values and the cultures that they inhabit. These approaches are applicable to notonly visual artworks, but literary and musical as well. It is important to recognize that these aremethods for dealing with axiological problems, primarily in the aesthetic mode, but otherquestions of value are addressed with each of these methodologies.Understanding how one approaches an artwork is almost as important as the artworkitself. A moment ago, I gave an example of how to approach the description of an artwork. Suchdescriptions are concerned with addressing certain measurable facts about an artwork. Suchquestions are concerned with the who, what, when, where, and how type questions of an artwork.But the really interesting questions about art, at least to me, are the why questions. People have atendency to disagree about the answers to such questions. What is often not realized is that manyof the why questions have a particular methodological bias attached to them when they are usedto interpret and artwork and provide an evaluation of it.Essentially, there are two main camps of methodological analysis: (1) intrinsic; and (2)extrinsic. These are essentially philosophic questions of axiology—the philosophic study ofvalue. Intrinsic and extrinsic value, as axiological notions, are the foundation for whether or notone claims to be a subjectivist or an objectivist when it comes to the value of an artwork.A subjectivist claims that the value of an artwork is based on the projected desire that theartwork is, in fact, valuable. That is, the value of an artwork is predicated on the extrinsic valueplaced on it by an outside source. The theories that generally support such a notion areSemiotics, Marxism, Psychoanalysis, Feminism, and Post-colonialism. Notice how this conceptonly allows the art to have value if a person or a group claims that it has value. Like the exampleof my coffee cup on the desk as a piece of impromptu art, the work only has value if theaudience deems it to have value.Conversely, an objectivist claims that an art object has intrinsic value regardless of thetastes of the audience. The theories that gravitate in this direction are Biography &Autobiography, Iconography, Formalism, and Hermeneutics. Indeed, it is possible to imagine aset of students at the beginning of an art class never being exposed to art and art theories notbeing able to recognize the value of a particular artwork; however, after being made aware ofhow to recognize and interpret an artwork, proper evaluation can occur. Yet note, that the

Upload your study docs or become a

Course Hero member to access this document

Upload your study docs or become a

Course Hero member to access this document

End of preview. Want to read all 4 pages?

Upload your study docs or become a

Course Hero member to access this document

Term
Fall
Professor
N/A
Tags

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture